Dogs for Good South West

Project Category: Registered charityProject Tags: Disability

  • Our Story

    Dogs for Good is a life-transforming charity that trains dogs to support adults and children with a wide variety of disabilities and conditions to live full and active lives in the community.

    Our South West satellite centre is based at The Park Community Centre in Knowle, Bristol. From here two Instructors match and train assistance dogs for adults and children with physical disabilities. We also manage our Puppy Socialiser scheme here, whereby volunteers provide our puppies a home for their first year, teaching them basic skills and introducing them to different environments.

    We currently provide three core services, these are:

    1. Assistance Dogs:

    We train dogs to support adults and children with physical disabilities in their homes and in the community. The dogs undertake tasks such as retrieving dropped items, opening doors, removing articles of clothing and barking on command in case of an emergency.

    We also provide assistance dogs for children with autism, where dogs are trained to help support the social and cognitive development of the child.

    2. Community Dogs:

    The Community Dog service supports people with autism, learning disabilities and dementia who are not able to have a dog living with them on a full-time basis, but who could benefit from structured interventions with a dog.

    A specially trained dog and experienced practitioner work together with clear goals to help people overcome specific challenges and develop life skills. For each individual, we design a programme of engaging activities with the dog, aimed at meeting the person’s needs.

    3. Family Dog Workshops:

    Through our Family Dog service we deliver workshops and an aftercare service designed to provide parents with the information they need to source, select, handle and train a pet dog specifically to respond to the needs of their child with autism.

    Our specialist advice and support has brought life-changing benefits to whole families. Research has shown that the families we work with have lowered parental stress, they go out more together and children with autism have fewer meltdowns as a result of their pet dog.

    How Your Support Would Help

    Demand for our services is huge; last year alone we received over 5,000 enquiries from people interested in learning how a dog could be trained to transform their life or a family member’s. We have large waiting lists across all of our services. During 2019 we will need to raise more than £3.5million to fund the running and development of our services.

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